Yuri Svjaintsev, Broadside Correspondent

Homecoming Week began on Monday with a heavy dose of George Mason University spirit. The celebration coincided with Mardi Gras and Michelle Davis, event coordinator and assistant director for programming from the Office of Student Activities, was there to bring a little New Orleans flavor to the Fairfax campus. One of the highlights of the week-long event was the Homecoming Pageant.

Traditionally, homecoming pageants have a king and a queen. However, this year’s host, Reann Ballslee, the drag queen who represented Mason as 2009’s homecoming queen, inaugurated a new tradition by naming a gender-neutral “Mason Majesty.”

Four students were up to bat in a competition that combined an overview of each contestant’s contributions to Mason, a trivia session, a talent show and a round of personal questions conducted by the Office of Student Activities at Ballslee’s discretion.

The students who participated were Peter Danjczek, Lee Warner, Thomas Lee and Meredith Cutchin. All are accomplished members of Mason’s student community.

The trivia session was loaded with questions about Mason life, history and random tidbits about the man George Mason himself. For instance, who knew that rubbing Mason’s foot brought good luck, or what the four original buildings of the Fairfax campus were?

The talent show offered another look into the personalities of the contestants. Danjczek broke the ice by playing “Wonderwall” by Oasis, followed by Warner and his rendition of “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys. Lee wowed the crowd with his fresh break dancing to “Love Story” by Taylor Swift, while Cutchin finished up the talent portion of the contest by singing “Part of Your World” from the film The Little Mermaid.

The last session involved personal questions asked by the events committee and Ballslee. Queries ranged from the mundane “What did you learn most during your time at George Mason?” to the embarrassing “Who do you Facebook-stalk the most?”

Seniors Warner and Danjczek said that they had given much to Mason and felt that participating in the pageant was the best way to end their years here.

“I will vote for whoever is going to represent Mason the best,” said Natalie Jacobsen, a government and international politics major. She added that she was looking for someone who is “upbeat and proud to be a Mason student.”

Davis said turnout was “good” but down slightly from last year, likely due to the weather.